The scandal of the evangelical mind is that there is not much of an evangelical mind.

— Mark A. Noll, The Scandal of the Evangelical Mind (1994)

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The sun has set on "Fossil Friday", but it is rising on a new type of historical dig on our blog. A virtual scavenger hunt if you will.

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Wedding rings. Licensed CC-BY-2.0 by Jeff Belmonte, via Wikimedia Commons.Wedding bells are ringing in Seattle, Washington, and Richardson, Texas: the Discovery Institute and the Foundation for Thought and Ethics are getting hitched!

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Since December 2005, when Judge John E. Jones III ruled that “intelligent design” is not science and cannot be forced into public school science classes, we’ve celebrated December 20 as Kitzmas. We write carols (and haikus). But we’ve never really had a Kitzmas tree before.

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In part 1, I was describing how Kanawha County, West Virginia, almost anticipated Dover, Pennsylvania, in provoking the first legal case over the constitutionality of teaching “intelligent design” in the public schools. After a proposed equal-time-for-creation-science policy was unsuccessful in 1999, local Kanawha creationists regrouped with a campaign to press for the purchase of copies of the creationist textbook Of Pandas and People. NCSE was asked to inform the school district about what was wrong with the textbook, and complied, with Molleen Matsumura sending a superb detailed letter and plenty of supporting information to the superintendent of schools. What was the upshot?

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I’ve been volunteering in the NCSE archives since I retired, and it’s been a lot of fun rummaging through old files. I came across one this week that brought me up short, because its contents suggested the possibility that the 2005 “intelligent design” trial, Kitzmiller v. Dover, could have played out five years earlier, in West Virginia.

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